Can Urgent Care Treat Swimmer's Ear?

July 30, 2022

Swimmer's ear is an infection that is typically caused by bacteria that thrive in moist environments. The condition can be extremely painful and may require antibiotics for treatment. The medical providers at AFC Boulder can diagnose your symptoms and write a prescription for antibiotics. If you're suffering from an ear infection, visit our urgent care center today. 

What is swimmer's ear, and what are the symptoms?

Swimmer's ear is an infection of the outer ear canal. The condition is often caused by bacteria that enter the ear through breaks in the skin. Swimmer's ear can also be caused by viruses or fungi. Symptoms of swimmer's ear include:

  • Ear pain
  • Itching
  • Discharge from the ear
  • Redness or swelling of the ear

How can you prevent swimmer's ear from occurring in the first place?

The best way to try and prevent swimmer's ear is to keep the ear canal dry. This can be done by using a towel to dry the ear after swimming and using earplugs or a silicone swimming cap when swimming in chlorinated water. It's also important to avoid putting objects in the ear, such as cotton swabs.

What should you do if you think you have swimmer's ear?

If you think you may have swimmer's ear, it's important to see a healthcare provider as soon as possible. Swimmer's ear can often be treated with over-the-counter pain relievers and ear drops. However, in some cases, antibiotics may be necessary.

Are there any home remedies?

There are a few remedies you can try at home that may help relieve the symptoms of swimmer's ear. These include:

  • Applying a warm, wet compress to the ear
  • Taking over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen
  • Using over-the-counter ear drops

Can urgent care treat swimmer's ear?

If you think you have swimmer's ear, it's important to see a healthcare provider as soon as possible. Providers at urgent care can treat swimmer's ear by prescribing antibiotics if necessary and providing guidance on home care.


Are there any risks associated with not seeking treatment?

If swimmer's ear is left untreated, the infection can spread to the bone and cause more serious complications. Additionally, the pain associated with swimmer's ear can be quite severe.

Getting a diagnosis by a doctor is the only way to know what type of infection you have. AFC Boulder can help you determine if your symptoms are caused by swimmer's ear and provide you with the best treatment options.

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